Watch Inspire Burlington: New Directions in Transportation

Mayor Rick Goldring’s Inspire Burlington series presents a discussion about the future of transportation in Burlington, featuring noted urban planner Brent Toderian and public transit expert Jarrett Walker. Filmed on Nov. 14, 2016 at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre.

Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee – October Update

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The new logo for the Burlington Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee, designed by member Roxanne Chami.

Guest blog by Mark McGuire and Chris Ritsma, Co-Chairs of the Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee.

Mayor Rick Goldring’s Millennial Advisory Committee met on Thursday, Oct. 13 at Burlington City Hall. The October meeting was an action-oriented meeting, prioritizing and executing the Millennial Advisory Committee’s work plan short-term goals. The remainder of the meeting featured a discussion of upcoming meetings and initiatives for the committee.

The Mayor’s Millennial Advisory Committee discussed upcoming events of importance to their objective of engaging millennials within Burlington. An example of an upcoming outreach initiative will be at Mayor Rick Goldring’s Inspire Burlington Series, presenting New Directions in Transportation with Brent Toderian and Jarrett Walker on Monday, Nov. 14, 2016 at 7 p.m. at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre, 440 Locust St. The Mayor’s Millennial Advisory will have an interactive display and table to engage with attendees under the theme of “What would encourage you to bus/bike/walk more in Burlington?” with a focus on active transportation. Continue reading

September/October 2016 Progress Report

Mayor Rick Goldring, Burlington Foundation President and CEO Colleen Mulholland, Burlington Foundation Board Chair Ron Foxcroft and TSN's Michael Landsberg at Inspire Burlington on Oct. 5. The next Inspire Burlington event is set for Nov. 14, 2016 at 7 p.m. Register today: burlington.ca/mayor.

Mayor Rick Goldring, Burlington Foundation President and CEO Colleen Mulholland, Burlington Foundation Board Chair Ron Foxcroft and TSN’s Michael Landsberg at Inspire Burlington on Oct. 5. The next Inspire Burlington event is set for Nov. 14, 2016 at 7 p.m.

Committee and Council Meetings

Agendas, minutes and videos on standing committee and council meetings, as well as agendas and reports for upcoming meetings, are available online.

Burlington City Council – Monday, Oct. 31 at 6:30 p.m.

Committee of the Whole – Thursday, Nov. 3 at 1 p.m.

Community and Corporate Services Committee – Monday, Nov. 7

Development and Infrastructure Committee – Tuesday, Nov. 8

Burlington City Council – Monday, Nov. 28 at 6:30 p.m.

Applicable Learning from Sweden and Denmark

Västra Hamnen – the Western Harbour – is one of Malmö’s largest residential construction projects. When complete, it will have 20,000 residents and a roughly equivalent number of workspaces. Once a declining post-industrial area, the Western Harbour has been transformed into an attractive and sustainable modern dockland development.

Västra Hamnen – the Western Harbour – is one of Malmö’s largest residential construction projects. When complete, it will have 20,000 residents and a roughly equivalent number of workspaces. Once a declining post-industrial area, the Western Harbour has been transformed into an attractive and sustainable modern development.

Last month, I travelled to Växjö, Sweden with a delegation from the City of Burlington. The purpose of the trip was to work with municipal and industry representatives to discuss a potential strategic partnership and share knowledge related to community energy, sustainable development and economic development opportunities.

The city delegation was in Växjö, Sweden on Sept. 26 and 27, 2016. The delegation also met with other municipal jurisdictions, including Malmö, Sweden (Sept. 28), and Copenhagen, Denmark (Sept. 29).

Delegation members included James Ridge, City Manager; Frank McKeown, Executive Director of Burlington Economic Development Corporation and Paul Sharman, Ward 5 City and Region Councillor. Staff from the City of Burlington, Burlington Hydro and McMaster University also accompanied us.

Burlington is working towards the long-term goal of becoming carbon neutral, as stated in the city’s Strategic Plan 2015-40. Växjö, Sweden has the same goal. That city is a world environmental leader with a growing economy. In 1996, the city adopted a target for the community to be fossil fuel free by 2030. Greenhouse gas emissions have been cut by 48 per cent between 1998 and 2014 on a per capita basis.

Here at home, the Province of Ontario is expected to release its climate change strategy with ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This will likely significantly impact city operations, such as transportation and the use of thermal energy.

Among the noteworthy topics discussed were:

  • District energy: One of the main reasons we went to Sweden and Denmark was to learn more about district energy, as the City of Burlington is undertaking a feasibility study to investigate a potential district energy facility in our community. This direction is part of the Community Energy Plan. Sweden and Denmark have used district energy for many decades, and in some cases, for more than a hundred years. District energy plants have the potential to provide predictable and potentially cleaner energy. The focus of the feasibility work in Burlington focuses on downtown, as well as areas around the Aldershot and Burlington GO stations. We had many presentations on district energy and visited district energy facilities, including the Sysav facility in Malmö, Sweden, which uses waste-to-energy technology as a source for both electricity and heat for tens of thousands of homes. Continue reading

Vive la revolution: Working together on mental illness

Michael Landsberg speaks to a large crowd at the Inspire Burlington event on Oct. 5.

Michael Landsberg speaks to a large crowd at the Inspire Burlington event on Oct. 5.

We are all impacted by mental illness.

Whether it is firsthand, a family member, a friend or a coworker – we all have our own story.

Through the work of community groups, like the Burlington Foundation Mental Wellness Alliance, awareness and support for mental illness is improving.16-610-MO-SickNotWeak-Social-1080x1080

However, there is always more that can be done.

Michael Landsberg is one of those leading the charge for change.

Many Canadians know Michael from his work on former TSN program Off the Record, and on his current show, Naylor and Landsberg. A smaller, but not insignificant group also knows him for his advocacy with his not-for-profit organization, #SickNotWeak.

Michael struggles daily with depression. At an event I attended this spring, he talked about the good days, the bad days and the grey days in between. I was inspired by his candour and sincerity.

In a column by Michael in 2012, he wrote: “We are fighting a war — for the minds of the people. This revolution can’t be stopped. We are destined to win and have the world see depression as an illness – not a weakness. Vive la revolution.” Continue reading

February 2016 Progress Report

Committee and Council Meetings

Agendas, minutes and videos on standing committee and council meetings in February, as well as agendas and reports for upcoming meetings, are available online.

Council News in Brief

As a way to further engage the community in our conversation about great city-building and keep you informed of the latest news at City Hall, I am posting highlights from committee and council meetings on my blog at www.burlingtonmayor.com. Highlights will be posted within a day or two of committee and council meetings on my blog. Please check back regularly to stay up to date. Here are the latest committee and council news items in brief for February:  Continue reading